Five minutes with Trustee Paul Graham

After our recent AGM and the advent of some fresh faces on the Making Music Board of Trustees, we welcome Paul Graham in a quick fire interview.

What drew you to Making Music?
I am passionate about live music and wanted to give something back to society so MM seemed ideal.  I believe that we need to support the Performing Arts as a key sector of the UK economy and fear that with the decline of music in schools that this may be threatened in the future.

What is your day job?
I work in the City where I am chief economist for Sumitomo Mitsui Bank Corp. I manage a team of 20 and my main focus is on how modern technology is affecting traditional working practices especially from developing industries such as FinTech and Alternative Energy.

How did you come up with the idea of setting up the Trinity Folk Festival?
We realised that there were a lot of brilliant young performers on the folk scene who were not getting the opportunities their talents deserved. Also folk needs to expand its reach beyond its traditional market if it is to thrive. My aim with the festival has been to satisfy these two issues.

Do you play any instruments or sing? 
I have tried a number of instruments without demonstrating any significant talent but I have regularly sung average first bass in church choirs including visits to major cathedrals such as Durham, Exeter and Norwich.

Do you have a particular favourite piece of music or song? 
Very difficult to choose but my favourite hymn is “Love Unknown”, favourite modern folk song is “Come on England” by Merry Hell and I have always loved the music of The Beatles with “Penny Lane” being a favourite. Sorry that it’s not a more erudite list.

If you could invite three people, past or present, to a dinner party who would they be and why?
Kenny Dalglish - recently knighted for services to Liverpool and my all time favourite footballer, Ralph Vaughan Williams - favourite classical composer with his focus on folk song, and Nelson Mandela - why would you choose anybody else?


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